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Understanding the Basics of Rendering Art

February 4, 2023

Rendering Art

Rendering art is a process that digital artists employ to give a piece of 3D modeling or animation its final appearance. This stage of the production involves a wide range of tasks, including math calculations, and can be intimidating for many artists. However, if you understand the basics of rendering, you can make your artwork look amazing.

The term render refers to the process of creating an image from a 3D scene in a software package, such as Maya, Photoshop, or 3D Max. This involves the calculation of a range of techniques, such as reflections, diffuse, specular, lighting, and shadows.

Using Rendering Techniques in Digital Painting

The most important element of the rendering process is to get the object looking as realistic as possible. A few techniques are used to help accomplish this, such as ray casting and ray tracing. These methods can be very fast or slow, depending on the complexity of the object.

Having a high polycount for the object you're trying to render will affect how realistic it looks. For example, a ball that has a million polygons will look less like a real-life disco ball than one with a midlevel polycount of 60,000.

To achieve a more realistic rendering, it's important to understand the differences between greyscale and color. Having different tones for each colour will allow you to show more detail, but will also save time as you'll need to create only the outlines of the colours instead of having to do all the shading and refraction calculations yourself.


I enjoy designing and curating experiences both virtually and in 3-dimensional reality.
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